Banks required to limit ATM withdrawal at night hinh anh 1Credit institutions and branches of foreign banks in the country are being asked to limit cash withdrawal at their ATMs at night.(Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNS/VNA) - The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) has required credit institutions and branches of foreign banks in the country to limit cash withdrawal at their automatic teller machines (ATMs) at night.

A written request issued last week asked the institutions and branches to consider lowering caps on ATM withdrawal from 11 pm to 5 am to minimise potential risks for the banks and their clients. 

The agencies should also adopt monitoring measures to warn their cardholders about risks, basing on analysis of behaviors and habits, and geographic locations of their clients.

They are also required to strictly comply with the SBV’s laws and regulations while enhancing internal inspections and audits of card payment activities, both in number and quality.

SBV also told them to review all procedures for card payment activities and fully carry out risk prevention measures in each stage in a bid to prevent crime. They also should make their clients more aware of information security issues.

Also, the agencies should work closely with competent organisations to promptly handle and address risks in card payment activities. This move is meant to avoid the situation in which banking customers complain about lost money for long periods of time, possibly affecting the prestige of the national banking system.

The SBV’s move was made after several Vietnamese banks had trouble dealing with card data theft and so-called skimming at ATMs, especially at night, including Agribank. In April this year, 400 Agribank accounts were the victims of theft.

According to the Ministry of Public Security’s C50 division on anti-cybercrime, it arrested dozens of suspects on charges of ATM theft and bank card-related crimes between 2015 and 2017, with damage ranging from hundreds to billions of Vietnamese dong.

C50 also stated that most thieves who steal money by using skimming devices are of foreign nationality, including China, Malaysia, Bulgaria, the UK and the Netherlands.

They commonly target large cities like Hanoi, HCM City, Da Nang and Hai Phong.

According to experts, many countries in the world are quickly switching to chip cards that are safer. Vietnam, therefore, might risk becoming a hot spot for card fraudsters because magnetic stripe cards are still popular here due to their lower costs. 

About 56 percent of transactions in Asia use chip cards, according to EMVCo, an organisation that facilitates worldwide interoperability and acceptance of secure payment transactions.

According to SBV plans, some 70 million magnetic stripe cards in Vietnam will be replaced by chip cards meeting EMV standards by 2020.-VNS/VNA